RJ is a gentle, fun-loving mutt who, not so long ago, was found wandering alone down in North Carolina. A partner group to Kennebunk’s Animal Welfare Society took him in. During the ensuing physical, it was discovered that the poor dog had a major diaphragmatic hernia, causing his internal organs to be disjointed and allowing his colon to encroach upon his heart. It didn’t look good. AWS’s partners didn’t have the resources for the requisite surgery to save RJ, but the Mainers did. RJ got transported up, and, having received his procedure and recovered for a month, he is now up for adoption with a fine prognosis.

The AWS has many, many stories like this one, some even closer to having an unhappy ending before their vets, staff and volunteers stepped in. But medical treatment costs money. Sometimes a lot of it. And the Society is a non-profit whose resources are far from unlimited. Logical conclusion? Fundraisers. Their best and biggest? Strut Your Mutt, a hundreds-strong stroll along Mother’s Beach (263-267 Beach Ave, Kennebunk) on Sunday, September 10, with dogs certainly encouraged. The festivities begin at 9 a.m., with the walk starting at 11 a.m. Register at https://www.crowdrise.com/AWSStrutYourMutt as an individual for $12 or a family (up to two adults and four children) for $25. Don’t wait, because you’ll want plenty of time to gather pledges from family, friends and co-workers. Work hard on it; as of Monday, only 30% of the set fundraising goal of $75,000 had been reached.

Other than the fun, frolic and camaraderie of the stroll, attractions at Strut Your Mutt include a photo booth (new for 2017), a kid’s zone with carnival games and a bounce house, a canine agility zone, a wellness zone with dog microchip scans and nail trims, a pet pavilion with merchant and vendor booths, and live, danceable music from the Serfs, a Seacoast accordion-fronted surf/instrumental band. Plus, all registrants receive a T-shirt for themselves and a bandana for their dog, while supplies last. Scrape together a ton of pledges, and you may even receive one of the fundraising prizes (top prize is a Portland getaway that includes dog boarding). And, for the perennially single, it’s not like your dog getting along with theirs isn’t an excellent opening. Get out there.

Event website: http://animalwelfaresociety.org/news-events/strut-your-mutt/

AWS Phone: (207) 985-3244

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